The Pre-Kindergarten curriculum considers the whole scholar in a developmentally appropriate manner. Every lesson focuses on active learning, oral language, and connecting written symbols with print to gain meaning.
The use of the Elements of Depth and Complexity encourages higher order thinking as scholars ponder, experience, and learn from the world around them. Scholarly behaviors help Pre-Kindergarten scholars develop behaviors that increase learning. Individualized instruction is realized as learning opportunities are developed using Multiple Intelligences.
Primary School scholars are taught to look at the world through the Global Theme lens of Order. Through literature, conversations, and learning activities, scholars develop an understanding of the following essential, conceptual truths (generalizations):
- Order has a beginning, middle, and end.
- Order demands respect and cooperation.
- Order provides structure and safety.
- Order follows rules.
- Order allows for predictions.
- Order brings about change.
MOVEMENT AND COORDINATION
The basic goal of the Pre-Kindergarten program asks the scholars to control their bodies in order to stop and start movement according to a signal, maintain balance, move through space, throw and kick objects, and move cooperatively with others.
Physical Attention and Relaxation
- Relax specific body muscles and/or the whole body, moving from a high activity level to a quiet, focused state.
Gross Motor Skills
- Maintain balance while walking forward, backwards, and sideways.
- Move through space using various movements.
- Move through space by completing a circuit or obstacle course.
- Throw or kick an object with increasing accuracy at identified targets.
- Play catch using a large ball.
- Ride a tricycle.
- Maintain momentum on a swing by pumping.
- Play group games.
Using the Body Expressively
- Act out a nursery rhyme, poem, or fingerplay.
SOCIAL AND EMOTIONAL DEVELOPMENT
The basic goals for social and emotional development focus on skills that enable the young scholar to function independently within the social setting of the class group.
- Draw a dimensional picture of a person.
- Care for personal needs by dressing independently.
- Identify and label emotions.
- Use acceptable methods of expressing anger.
- Recognize and call school personnel by name.
- Ask adult for help appropriately.
- Demonstrate observable listening behaviors.
- Identify and follow classroom rules.
- Offer assistance to another scholar.
- Carry out certain chores that contribute to the group.
- Respect the personal belongings and property of others.
- Share and take turns.
- Follow rules for simple games.
- Ignore inappropriate peer behavior.
- Accept consequences of actions.
- Use words to solve problems and conflicts.
- Complete an activity or project in conjunction with another scholar or small group.
- Memorize address, phone number and date of birth.
- Carry out multi-step oral directions.
- Choose and use a toy or do an activity independently.
- Organize and plan what is needed to carry out a project or task.
- Describe and evaluate one’s own work.
In terms of language development, the primary focus during the preschool years is on oral language development. However, it is also important to recognize that, given appropriate experiences, the initial foundation for written language development is also put into place at this time.
- Understand and use intonation and emphasis.
- Carry on a dialogue or conversation.
- Carry on a simple conversation on the telephone.
- Identify and express physical sensations, mental states, and emotional feelings.
- Sequence and describe three to five images or events.
- Describe an event or task that will take place.
- Give simple, multi-step directions.
- Express a personal opinion.
- Assume a different role or perspective.
- Identify outcomes and possible causes.
- Name opposites.
- Point to, understand, and use increasingly precise nouns, verbs, and adjectives.
- Point to and name specified body parts.
- Point to and name specific shapes.
- Point to and correctly use quantity words.
- Demonstrate understanding and correct use of temporal and spatial words.
- Use future verb tense.
- Understand and use complex sentences.
- Combine simple sentences.
- Describe self, home, and immediate family.
- Point to and correctly use words to compare size.
- After listening to an oral description of a scene, recreate the scene in pictures.
- Give a detailed, sequential explanation of how to do something.
- Identify and correctly use adverbs.
Nursery Rhymes, Poems, Fingerplays, and Songs
- Independently memorize and recite a simple nursery rhyme, poem, or song.
- Pantomime a nursery rhyme, poem or fingerplay.
- Finish recitation of a familiar rhyme, poem, or songs with or without rhyme.
Storybook Reading and Storytelling
- Attend and listen to picture books of various genres.
- Answer who, what, where, when and why questions.
- “Retell” a story that has been read aloud.
- Sequence illustrations of story events.
- Tell (read) a story based on the illustrations of a book with text.
- Attend and listen to books with minimal or no illustrations.
- Predict events in a story.
- Provide a story ending consistent with other given story events.
- Make up and tell a story.
- Identify parts of a book and where to begin and end reading.
- Use cover and illustration cues to locate books on particular topics.
- Point to words that begin with the same letter as own first name.
Emerging Literacy Skills in Reading and Writing
- Dictate a simple letter, invitation, or thank you note.
- Use a simplified, illustrated schedule of activities.
- Use a simplified, illustrated telephone listing.
- Represent “in written form” people, objects, events, or activities, derived from one’s personal experience or imagination.
- Dictate a description to accompany one’s drawing.
- Follow a simple, illustrated recipe.
- Assemble a simple object or craft following illustrated directions.
- Represent “in written form,” following an actual experience.
- Write one’s first name, using uppercase and lowercase letters.
- Read the first names of classmates and family members.
- Associate spoken and written language.
- Point to words as distinct units on a page of print.
- Make beginning efforts to use invented, phonetic spelling.
- Segment a spoken sentence into separate, distinct words.
- Blend spoken parts of a compound word.
- Blend two spoken syllables into a word.
- Choose words that begin with the given sound.
- Give the beginning sound of a spoken word.
- Indicate the number of phonemes.
- Identify a given number or letters of the alphabet.
- Provide a rhyming word.
- Draw and use as motifs: horizontal line, vertical line, diagonal line, zigzag line, circle, spiral, moon, cross, cane, hook, bowl, bridge, wave, x, star.
- Hold a writing instrument correctly.
- Trace and draw outlines of geometric shapes.
The basic goals of the visual arts program ask scholars to attend to visual details, as well as to create, examine, and discuss art.
Attention to Visual Detail
- Play games requiring matching of like images.
- Identify the color of objects from nature when not in view.
- Demonstrate memory of visual details.
Exploration and Creation
- Staple, cut, and sew using various tools and techniques to complete art projects.
- Create sculpture.
- Examine a work of art by a known artist and create a work in the style of the artist.
- Work with other scholars to create a collective work of art.
- Look at and talk about works of art, describing details and “story” depicted.
- Describe one’s own art work.
The basic goals of the Pre-Kindergarten music program asks scholars to listen to, identify, and imitate sounds, sing songs individually and with others, and move interpretatively to music.
Attention to Differences in Sound
- Indicate whether pairs of sounds are the same or different.
- Identify family members or friends by their voice alone.
- Listen to environmental sound stories and describe the events in context.
- Identify and associate sounds with the objects and instruments.
- Identify a selection of music as vocal or instrumental.
Imitate and Produce Sound
- Imitate clapping pattern sequences.
- Use objects to imitate a sequence of sounds.
- Accompany an adult by clapping or using rhythm instruments to maintain the beat.
Listen to and Sing Songs
- Listen to, sing, and perform songs and fingerplays individually and with others.
- Sing a round for two or more groups.
Listen to and Move to Music
- Move to music carrying out a sequence of choreographed movements.
Mathematical thinking is developed through concrete objects and then pictures. Pre-Kindergarten scholars move from concrete experience to symbolic representation of the major strands of mathematics.
Patterns and Classification
- Identify pairs of objects or pictures as the same or different.
- Classify by color and shape.
- Sort objects and pictures according to size, function, or conceptual categories.
- Verbally label common attributes and characteristics.
- Continue, describe, and create complex color patterns.
- Complete puzzles of interlocking pieces.
Geometry and Measurement
- Classify and name specified shapes.
- Identify examples of specified shapes in everyday objects.
- Divide one item into approximately equal pieces.
- Compare pairs of objects by length, width, size, volume, mass, and temperature.
- Use a tool of measurement to compare length and height of objects.
- Seriate at least three items by length, height, or size.
Numbers and Number Sense
- Recite number sequence.
- Demonstrate one-to-one correspondence with concrete objects.
- Construct a collection of objects with same number of objects in each group.
- Count groups of objects with up to six items per group.
- Name and create a group with a specified number of objects.
- Arrange and write numerals in sequential order.
- Play a simple game that involves moving one’s marker the number of spaces shown on a single die.
- Organize and read quantitative data on simple bar graphs.
- Compare pairs of numerals.
- Describe groups using quantitative vocabulary.
- Illustrate and label the concept of “put together” and “take away” with sets of objects.
- Add and subtract problems represented by numerals.
- Identify and count up with pennies.
- Identify a quarter.
- Indicate value of dollar, penny, and quarter.
HISTORY AND GEOGRAPHY
The basic goals of the Pre-Kindergarten programs are to develop a sense of time and an orientation in space. Scholars are asked to consider time in terms of days, months, and years, as well as past, present, and future. The development of a sense of orientation in space enables scholars to situate themselves in space in relation to their physical movements. This also provides a context and vocabulary for later instruction in geometry and geography.
Orientation in Time -Vocabulary, Measures of Time, Passage of Time
- Understand and use temporal words to describe day-to-day occurrences.
- Use present, past, and future tenses of verbs.
- Sequence and describe three to five events.
- Identify and name days of the week in sequence.
- Correctly identify the day for yesterday and tomorrow.
- Use a simple, illustrated schedule of daily activities.
- Use a monthly calendar to locate and name the current month and day of the week.
- Use a monthly calendar to name and locate own date of birth.
- Use a monthly calendar to identify a horizontal series of seven squares as representing one week along with holidays and special events.
- Use a timeline to mark annual events.
- Use a timeline: century-long timeline to mark events across several generations.
- Sequence images depicting the evolution and completion of a project or undertaking over an extended period of time.
- Sequence and describe photos and drawings that represent a timeline of one’s own life experiences.
- Progression of the stages of development in the life of one person: Sequence and describe photos and/or drawings of a baby, school-age scholar, young adult, elderly adult.
- Generations within the context of family: Sequence and describe photos and/or drawings of a baby, school-age scholar, young adult, elderly adult.
- Arrange photos and/or drawings of members of one’s own family on a genealogical tree or diagram to represent three generations.
- Consider photos and/or drawings of activities associated with specific periods of life in reference to present age/stage of development and indicate verbally whether these are activities that may be part of past, present or future experiences.
- Match images of contemporary objects with like objects from past, indicating whether the objects belong to the “present” or “past.”
- Distinguish objects of the more “recent past” from objects of the “distant past.”
Orientation in Space-Vocabulary, Actual and Representational Space, Simple Maps, Basic Concepts
- Situate oneself in space or situate objects in relation to one another according to the indications given by spatial terms: here-there, in-on, in front of-behind, at the top of-at the bottom of, under-over, above-below, next to-in the middle of, etc.
- Follow or give oral, spatially related directions to move from one location to another within a familiar environment.
- Given oral, spatially referenced directions correlated to a picture in which different objects represent different “landmarks,” trace the path described.
- Reproduce a design represented on a pattern card using parquetry blocks, mosaic toys or pegs.
- Copy a tower or construction that has been made by another person using blocks of different shapes, colors or sizes.
- Match halves of symmetrical objects to make a whole.
- Color squares on a blank grid to reproduce designs represented on other grids.
- Continue a linear frieze-like pattern of symbols on a grid.
- Use simple coordinates to locate a point on a grid, in which points along one axis are designated by a symbol and points along the other axis are designated by a color.
- Use the shortest route to go from the exterior to the center of a simple maze.
- Mark the location of specific objects, places, etc., as requested on a simple map of a familiar place.
- Mark with arrows or other symbols a path that has been taken from one place to another on a simple map of a familiar place.
- Identify these geographic features and environments by name in real life, photos or drawings: land, water, ocean, lake, river, farm, forest (woods), jungle, desert, and city.
- Name the city, state and country in which he or she lives.
- Identify a map of the United States, indicating the location of his or her state.
- Identify a map of the United States, indicating land and ocean areas.
- Identify a globe by name, indicating land and ocean areas
Science in the Pre-Kindergarten year introduces scholars to a systematic way of looking at, describing and explaining the world around them. This systematic approach may be summarized as: (1) reflect and ask questions, (2) plan an activity and predict what will happen, (3) carry out the activity and observe what happens, and (4) report findings (words, drawings, displays, photos, etc.) and reflect on other related questions.
Human Characteristics, Needs, and Development
- Identify the heart and lungs and their functions
- Identify the sense and body part associated with the experience of certain sensations.
- Identify and describe the basic needs of food and drink.
- Identify and describe the basic needs of shelter, protection from temperature, and weather.
- Describe key physical characteristics (body parts and senses), development, needs, and life cycle of humans.
- Sequence photos and drawings of a baby, school-aged scholar, young adult and elderly adult to represent the life cycle.
Animal Characteristics, Needs, and Development
- Care for, observe and record observations of an animal, noting key physical characteristics, development, needs, and life cycle.
- Classify images of animals according to habitat or environment in which they generally live.
Plant Characteristics, Needs, and Development
- Plant, care for, and record observations of a plant, noting the parts of the plant, needs, development, and life cycle.
Physical Elements-Air, Water, Light
- Observe, describe, and record basic properties of water, air, and light.
Introduction to Magnetism
- Observe, describe and record the effects of magnets on various objects and other magnets.
Seasons and Weather
- Observe, describe and record some characteristics of weather.
- Observe, describe and record some characteristics of seasons.
Taking Care of the Earth
- Identify and describe objects that can be recycled.
- Select and use the appropriate tools to complete a task.